MAILBAG

MAILBAG

November 16 1964
MAILBAG

MAILBAG

November 16 1964

MAILBAG

Let’s stop knocking Canada / What’s ahead for Charlottetown?

I wish to commend Maclean's on its excellent editorial of October 3 (Go West. Young Man. Or East. Or North. But Don’t Just Stand Around Acting Bored). Canada is an exciting young nation “to be understood, to be admired, and to be loved." We hear so much today concerning separatism, minority governments, flag debates, and the like that I sometimes think too much attention is being given to our growth pains and not enough to the dynamic exciting growth itself. What a pleasure it was to see some mass-media optimism! It’s high time the attitude of negative cynicism, which seems to be present to an alarming degree in Canada, was discarded in favor of a positive optimistic approach to our problems and entire Canadian way of life. — RICK

BUTLER, MOUNT ALLISON UNIVERSITY, SACKVJLLE, N.B.

That’s John A. all over

In your issue of September 19 a picture of John A. Macdonald appears with the notation, “the first publication of a rare photo” (How John A. Conjured Up Canada). The selfsame photograph appears on page 351 of the Grade 13 history text Two Democracies published by this house in the summer of 1963. The photograph of Macdonald is available from the Public Archives in Ottawa. — JAMES K.

SMITH, TEXTBOOK EDITOR, THE RYERSON PRESS, TORONTO

How not to be obsolete

1 compliment you on the excellent article on the age of automation, Are People Obsolete Already?, by John Madure (October 3). Every Canadian should read and re-read it. My proposal: an ad hoc committee should be formed, consisting of trade unions, political parties, industrial management, agriculture and government to tackle the problems discussed in the article. The Canadian people have to be awakened from their indolent indifference. - S. H. DELHAAS, ST. CATH-

ARINES, ONT.

Who ministers marry

In Where Marriage Guidance Goes Wrong (September 19). it’s said. “Every profession has its own conception of the 'correct' wife. A minister, for instance, tends to select a mate who won’t be a threat or temptation to anyone in the congregation.” May 1 suggest that the authors are very naïve if they believe a!I this folklore about ministers. As a minister's wife who has been married twentyfive years, 1 know of no clergyman who has had such a low opinion of himself as a person that he has feared the reaction of a congregation in his choice of a mate. All the ministerial

marriages I know about have been love matches, begun often in college when the ideas of a pastorate have been very nebulous indeed. In my estimation, the theory of ministerial mating is ludicrous, to say the least.

MRS. M. BUTTARS, PICKERING, ONT.

Beauty before ability?

I feel 1 must criticize the article Jennie Winger son: Our Beautiful

Chance In Tokyo, October 3. The emphasis in the article and in some

of the pictures seems to be that she is going to win because of her beauty, rather than because of her ability as an athlete. — T. F. BROWN. TORONTO

Talk-back from Charlottetown

It is regrettable that my old friend Dennis Sweeting is so careless with his facts (Let's Stop Building Theatres That We Can't Lili, October 3). “The new fifteen,-hundred - seat theatre in Confederation Square is, like all the rest, an impressive monument,” he writes. The theatre has a capacity for most purposes of 945, and Confederation Square is, so far as I know', in Ottawa. He goes on to say that “most of its productions were boxoffice failures,” neglecting to mention that some of them were anything but. and that in fact the first Charlottctowm Festival achieved a remarkable breakthrough in its first year. He finds it “ghastly to contemplate the theatre’s future” in view of the small population of Prince Edward Island, which reminds me of all who said an even bigger theatre would never w-ork in a small town like Stratford. Ont. Our opportunities may outrun our capacity for taking advantage of them, but you cannot prove it by arguments based on inaccurate statistics and false deductions therefrom. —

MAVOR MOORE, ADMINISTRATOR, CONFEDERATION THEATRE, CHARLOTTETOWN

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MAILBAG

What Dior did —and didn’t / Changes and churches / Bond buffs

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I’m afraid your slip is showing, or at least that of your fashion advisor. I refer to Four “Looks" From The 1940s (September 5). The “new look" of Christian Dior, a return of the very feminine look, did not advocate padded shoulders; in fact, it brought sloping unpadded shoulders back into vogue. Square padded shoulders had been the fashion during the war years, when the tailored “utility” suits of ladies in "civvies” echoed the basic practical lines of the women’s forces’ uniforms. — MRS. P. J. LABONTE,

OTTAWA

What the United Church should do

Congratulations to Dr. Peter Gordon White and the United Church (How To Reinterpret I'he Bible And Bring A New Look To Sunday Schools; Reports, September 19) for having the courage to present the Bible as an historical rather than a supernatural document. This represents progress (long overdue) for the Christian churches. 1 feel brazen enough to offer a couple of unsolicited suggestions to the United Church for further progress; 1 ) Stop insisting that your doctrines be taught in our public schools. Use your new religious education curriculum for all its worth in the churches. Don’t look to the public schools to do the job you should be doing: bringing sectarian religious teachings into public schools is a serious assault on our democratic society. 2) Stop demanding that the underprivileged peoples of the world give up their religions in order to receive your material help. Act more in the spirit of the Unitarian Service Committee of Canada which does its charitable work without missionarizing. A logical next step after realizing that the Bible is a human history of one people’s struggles, is to respect the validity of other peoples’ scriptures and religious insights. It took a long time for Christian churches to begin to move aw'ay from Biblical arrogance and superstition. Dare we hope (perhaps even predict) that the next steps will come more quickly?— ARNOLD THAW, MINISTER, UNITARIAN CONGREGATION OF SOUTH PEEL, PORT CREDIT, ONT.

A very moving love story

I send my humble congratulations to Sidney Katz for his splendid article, The Love Story Of Frances McKearney And Massachusetts Public Enemy Number One (August 8). Moving, very moving, is the only way 1 can describe it. Being still fairly young, I possess most of the optimism of youth, and thus it gave me a great deal of satisfaction to see a man go through such an inspiring change, from the hopeless prisoner to a welladjusted happy man. Articles such as this please me very much, because

they look in such a constructive way at the subject of men in prison. Let us have more of this to help the masses believe that such men can achieve these and similar ends. — R. E. ROSS,

OTTAWA

A slow train to China

In China Diary (September 19), the writer, Roy A. Faibish, says he "walked into China” after a "two-hour train ride to the little border station of Shumchum.” Two mistakes. If he rode on the train to Shumchum, he certainly didn't "walk” into China. Shumchum is in Communist China and, besides, the Hong Kong train

stops at Low Wu, on the Hong Kong side, and goes no farther. Moreover, I really would like to know w'hy the train took “two hours” to travel twenty-two miles! However, 1 did read to the end and found it very interesting, even if I disagreed with some of the conclusions drawn from what he saw and heard. I am a former resident of Hong Kong and China.

— M. H. BROWN, TORONTO

Replies Author Faibish: “Reader

Brown draws a fine point. True, the train does stop at Low Wu — at which point you walk the few hundred yards into China to Shumchum. The trip was slow because the train carried a special group of several hundred school children and extra stops were made all along the way to allow them to get off.”

We didn't make Englishmen rich

There is scarcely a word of truth in Frank Kelley's allegations concerning the Grand Trunk Railway (Britain Exploited Us — So Let’s Stop Saluting The Union Jack. September 19). That company did not make Englishmen rich; they lost their shirts on it. In its sixty-six years of existence it never paid a dividend on its common stock; only on twelve occasions were dividends forthcoming (and then only in part) on its preferred stocks. In 1919, in what was in effect a forcible expropriation, Grand Trunk stocks to the par value of $180,422,381 became so much waste paper. Neither before I860 nor afterward were there any Canadian government guarantees on Grand Trunk stocks. The railway was not built on the cheap, nor was it re-

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built after twenty years; in many respects it was the best-built of all Canadian railways. On the whole British investors have fared less well in Canada than in almost any other part of the world; on the whole also Canada cost Britain more than any other colonial possession. The history of the Bank of Montreal is about to be published; therein it will be revealed that almost up to Confederation, British outlays for the defense of Canada were greater in any given year than

the totals of either the export or import trade of her North American provinces, or of the total cost of their local governments. Such defense expenditures provided most of the money in CIRCULATION.-G. R. STEVENS, MONIREAL

^ Kelley concentrates his ire on our divesting ourselves of all that is British in our national lite. No doubt he would prefer that we replace it with American influences, completing the

cycle in the Americanization of this country! Canadians should absorb the fact that our British background (at least in English-speaking parts) is mainly what distinguishes us from our neighbors to the south. I am really surprised that you would publish such

tripe! J. H. CONNELL, BURLINGTON,

ONT.

^ Well, T did not know what a punk lot we British are until I read Kelley’s piece. He has asked what we owe

England. Well, in a material sense, there is a bit of unfairness in our trading setup, which Canada might remove, seeing that Britain’s trade nets us a few hundred million dollars' gain each year. — JOHN HAYNE, WATERLOO, ONT.

^ Congratulations to Mr. Kelley. It takes some courage to face the facts and to admit it. About sixty percent of all Canadians are of his opinion but do not dare to express their thoughts, because unfortunately a small minority still tries to control the majority. — R. RAOF, HAMILTON

Creating a flag that is distinctly Canadian is not intended as a slight to England and the British know it. - HOWARD E. FULLER, WINNIPEG

^ 1 am from the old country, of loyal stock, as it is often put, but I can tell you I get sick and tired of meeting many, many Canadians who are more British than the British themselves. This is a great land — beautiful, majestic and overwhelming. The Anglophiles astound me! Do they not realize that the people in the old country are not very interested in what they think — that they don't care if we arc fighting over a flag or not? The Red Ensign to them is The British Merchant Navy Flag, or “Old Red Duster” as it is commonly called. — VI KATHLEEN MaCGREGOR, OTTAWA

Johnson and Goldwater and us?

Part of Ian Sclander’s U. S. Report (Portrait of One Nepro Who Wishes He Were Still A Slave, September 19) says, “The way he (the Negro) has it figured, President Lyndon Johnson couldn’t care less about Negroes. Nor could Barry Goldwater; all either of them wants is the Negro vote . . .” As an old-time Quebecker sees it, the Canadian political scene at the moment could be pictured in almost the same terms, simply changing “Negroes” to “French Canadians,” “Johnson” to “Pearson’ and “Goldwater” to “Diefenbaker.” - A. E. LEAVITT, VETVILLE,

CHATEAUGUAY, QUE.

Who originated “Iron Curtain”?

You state that Churchill coined the phrase “Iron Curtain” {These Were The Years That Made Oar World, September 5). It was Goebbels, the Nazi propaganda minister, who coined the phrase. —J. WII.KINSON, SOUTH

BURNABY, B.C.

No mystery about James Bond

I was very disturbed by Robert Fulford’s article On James Bond: Everyone's Favorite Moral Simpleton: Reviews, August 22. Why do books, movies and other forms of entertainment have to be dissected for the purpose of finding a reason for their existence and popularity and the enjoyment they bring? Entertainment should be enjoyed and accepted, not looked at from every angle to find a hidden reason why people enjoy it. Fuiford admits that he was possessed to read all the works of Fleming. 1 say fine, why not leave it at that? —

BOB WILSON, NIAGARA FALLS, ONT. ★